Home 30under30 2017 Tara Baker, 2017 Anthill 30under30 Winner

Tara Baker, 2017 Anthill 30under30 Winner

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What is the 30under30?

30under30 is an Anthill initiative launched in early 2008 to encourage and promote entrepreneurship among young Australians.

Each year, we invite our readers to nominate young Australian entrepreneurs deserving of recognition for their outstanding entrepreneurial endeavours. More.

Tara Baker, NSW (b. 1988)

Name: Tara Baker
Age: 29
Known for: Dancing With Her

 

Tara is standing up proud and tall to the hetero‑normative wedding industry and encouraging diversity and representation of all people within wedding media. Her business Dancing With Her (DWH) is launching the world’s first modern wedding magazine for LGBTQ+ brides.

“I am educating vendors on how to be more inclusive (hint: it doesn’t mean using a photo of a stereotypical gay couple on your website!) both in their media and language and creating an online space that inspires LGBTQ+ brides,” she explained to Anthill.

“DWH solves the social problem of the overrepresentation of hetero‑normative wedding media. As an engaged lesbian woman, searching for wedding planning inspiration left me and my partner feeling underrepresented and uninspired. We found that wedding media, worldwide, is aimed at the heterosexual community and that wedding vendors use outdated gendered language that is not welcoming to diverse couples. So, DWH is doing something about it.”

Tara went on to reveal that althought she is not trained in business, rather in Sociology and Psychology, this is actually an advantage for her.

“This forces me to think outside the box. I look at business from a more sociological perspective, what the community wants and needs rather than a money making venture that won’t make a real difference. This will give longevity to the business and keep clients interested,” she said.

“With a background in Sociology, mental health issues are close to my heart. I am driven by a desire to help that younger person, who is struggling with their sexuality, find media that they feel represented in. People think we live in this world were the issues for LGBTQ+ people aren’t ‘that bad anymore’ ‑ but, it’s simply not true. There’s a lot of work to be done yet.”

DWH released a digital magazine in April 2017 that has been downloaded to customers in more than 40 countries, from Iran to the USA, from China to Africa, and continues to be downloaded each and every day. Furthermore, both DWH and founder Tara Baker have been identified as finalists for five business awards over just the last three months.

The magazine currently reaches an audience of more than 200,000 individuals each month across its website and social channels ‑ not too bad for a brand that’s just six months old!

Anthill asks: Have you ever been lucky, punk?

I seized an unexpected opportunity when my partner hit her head, had life‑saving brain surgery and lay in a coma for 7 days ‑ she can’t remember the romantic holiday, and can’t remember making a decision to elope just hours earlier. Okay, VERY UNLUCKY, really ‑ she tried knocking on death’s door. But, that’s how this all started. It lead to a ‘real proposal’ and ‘real wedding planning’ ‑ which showed us that the wedding industry in Australia, and across the world, is hetero‑normative, leading us to do something about it. Funny how the world works! P.S. 2.5 years later she’s still recovering, but okay!

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